Web Beats Newspapers

June 17, 2002

Print World's Loss Of Home Shoppers Is 'Net's Gain

Inman News Features

For the first time, the Internet caught newspapers as the primary media resource for consumer home searches and surpassed newspapers in many key real estate marketing categories, according to the 2002 Survey of Home Buyers and Sellers was released by the National Association of Realtors.

Forty-one percent of homebuyers surveyed in the biennial report said they used the Internet as a home search resource, up 4 percent from 2000. Forty-one percent also said they used newspapers, down 2 percent from 2000. Since 1996, the use of the Internet for home searches has increased 39 percent, while use of newspapers has declined 10 percent.

According to NAR, of those who used the Internet, Realtor.com continued to be the real estate Web site of choice for homebuyers and sellers. Sixty-six percent -- or nearly two-thirds -- of homebuyers who used the Internet in their home search process accessed Realtor.com, an increase of 5 percent from 2000.

The survey also found that for the first time, the method consumers used to first learn about homes favored the Internet. In 2002, 8 percent said they first learned of their home on the Internet, compared to 7 percent from newspapers. This figure doubled for the Internet from 2000 and has doubled in every NAR Home Buyers and Sellers survey since 1996. The figure for newspapers declined 1 percent from 2000 and has declined 2 percent overall since 1996.

Thee survey reported that virtually all methods used by real estate agents to market homes, including yard signs, newspapers and home magazines, and even word of mouth from friends and relatives, declined in the 2002 -- except the Internet, which was used by 53 percent of agents as a marketing tool, up 14 percent from 2000.

Copyright: Inman News Service

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